Non-compete agreements are by far the most controversial kind of post-employment covenants and are least favored by the courts. However, a recent decision by a Georgia court indicates (at least in that state) the tide may be turning.
A recent decision by the Georgia Supreme Court, Palmer & Cay of Georgia, Inc. v. Lockton Companies, Inc., suggests that state may be changing its approach to the enforcement of non-compete provisions. In this case, the Court went so far as to say that the “business climate in the state of Georgia would be adversely affected if the courts were to refuse to uphold a freely negotiated agreement pursuant to which an employer sought to protect itself.”
Baloney! Refusing to enforce onerous non-compete clauses protects the right of free competition. Are we not a capitalist economy? Doesn’t competition benefit the consumer and ultimately the country’s economy by encouraging competition?